You’re still jumping for joy over your recent marriage proposal (rightfully so) and are excited to share this exciting time of your life with friends and family. While wedding preparations may or may not already be in the works, an engagement party is the first of many celebrations leading up to your wedding. Whether you’re throwing the party yourself or friends and family are doing the planning, budget is always a factor in all things wedding related. That’s why the Smokehouse Grill is here with tips for planning a fun and affordable engagement party that you and your guests will never forget. From initial planning to choosing the best catering in Maryland, we’re here to help you kick off your wedding celebrations the right way.
Engagement Party Planning: Initial Steps
Laying the Foundation for a Successful Celebration
The first step in planning your engagement party is, of course, choosing a venue. What’s nice about engagement parties is that they are typically much more laid-back than the wedding itself, making it appropriate to plan a simple backyard barbecue engagement party or a cocktail party type of event. You don’t want to upstage your actual wedding, so taking the time to think through an appropriate yet complimentary engagement party style is key.
Once the venue is booked, it’s time to set the guest list and send invitations. The guest list is heavily dependent on who is hosting the engagement party (the couple, the bride’s parts, the couple’s friend), but it’s vital to note that anyone who is invited to the engagement party should also be invited to the wedding. Depending on the formality of your event, invitations can be a simple way to save money in your planning efforts. A dinner party or backyard barbecue are often suitable for a more informal invitation type like an email, evite, or Facebook event. Otherwise, affordable invitations can be made and customized on sites like Shutterfly.
What’s great about an engagement party is that the couple often doesn’t have many details ironed out for the wedding yet. This is why we recommend using an engagement party to try out vendors for your wedding. Ordering a few small centerpieces from a local florist or cupcakes from a wedding cake vendor you’ve been considering. Additionally, this is a great chance to try out catering in Maryland to choose a vendor that provides delicious food and the flexibility and service you want for your big day itself.
The Best Catering in Maryland for Your Engagement Party
Choosing the Right Food and Drink from a Caterer in Maryland
Food is inarguably one of the most important parts of any celebration, but depending on the nature of your engagement party, you have several choices to make regarding the food and drinks for your party:
If you’re considering a laid-back celebration like a backyard barbeque or dinner party, the Smokehouse Grill has an extensive menu full of great choices for any type of occasion. Whether you’re thinking about an assortment of fresh, smoky barbecued meats, tasty seafood, or something a little more upscale, Smokehouse Grill is the caterer in Maryland you can trust to bring the flavor to any type of event at a price you can’t beat.
Appetizers & Light Snacks
For engagement parties, many people opt for a cocktail party with snacks and appetizers. Smokehouse Grill offer beautifully plated appetizers like fruits and veggie trays, bacon-wrapped scallops, raspberry and brie, stuffed mushrooms, and more to deliver an assortment of tasty bites.
Bar and Liquor Services
An engagement party is a huge celebration of the soon-to-be-married couple. Customarily, engagement parties feature a number of toasts, which is why many people choose bar and liquor services for their engagement parties. For as little as $4 per person per hour, Smokehouse Grill offers open bar services and can help you choose the drink menu that’s perfect for your guests.
Affordable Engagement Party Ideas You’ll Love
Guess the Dress
Whether the bride-to-be has found her dress yet or not, Guess the Dress is the fun favor the brings excitement and laughter to your event. Available on Etsy, this fun game is perfect for your table setting and is the perfect activity for stirring up excitement among guests of all ages.
Using your engagement party to provide tiny previews of your wedding is a great way to get guests excited for the big day. By creating a ‘Meet the Bridal Party’ board or purchasing cupcakes in the same flavor as your wedding cake, you’ll showcase what your guests have to anticipate on the big day.
If your engagement photos are already completed, bee sure to bring an engagement photobook to your engagement party. Your guests can sign with their favorite memories and well-wishes for the couple, creating a fun memento to cherish.
When it comes to decor, don’t feel pressured to match your wedding color scheme. White balloons, flowers, ribbons, and table cloths are the perfect go-to for a bridal feel without breaking the bank or having too many wedding details sorted out yet.
While party favors aren’t necessary for casual events, we love these tiny and clever ‘engagemints’ to take home or suck on after dinner.
Ready to start planning the ultimate engagement party? Get in touch with the Smokehouse Grill today to begin preparations for every wedding-related celebration.